Q&A Controlling fire in Dutchwest stove

QandA Posted By QandA, Jan 1, 2005 at 2:20 PM

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  1. QandA

    New Member 2.
    Staff Member

    Nov 27, 2012

    Hi. My fiance and I recently bought a house that came with a Federal Airtight woodstove that appears to have been installed in 1985. The stove has a round vent on the bottom and a round vent on the square door on the side. We use a thermometer on the stack and try to keep the heat between the recommended temperature of 250 to 450 degrees. However, the temperature will sometimes rise uncontrollable up to 700 to 800 degrees. In response to the rise in heat, we close both vents until the stove cools down. What is the best method to regulate the heat? Logically, it seems that the more open the vent, the more air that gets in and the faster and hotter the fire burns. In our case, it sometimes seems the more we close the vents, the hotter the stove gets which results in us closing them fully until the temperature cools off. Any tips? In addition, would recommend getting a newer stove. Since this is our first experience with a woodstove, I don't know if newer stoves are more efficient and easier to control. Thanks!


    This is a wood and coal model...that is not of the highest quality. The older models such as yours were made in Taiwan...now they are OK and made in Vermont.

    Anyway, when burning wood, use the draft control that is on the side door- this will allow the wood to burn from one end to the other like a cigar...See the article "tending a fire" for more info on this technique (https://www.hearth.com/what/specific.html)

    This will result in a more controlled burn. The control on the bottom door is for coal, which burns from the bottom, as so needs under fire air.

    Closing the vents after the entire fire is at the red ember stage CAN increase the heat by holding the fire in the stove...as opposed to some heat going up the chimney. Wood burning is an art and science and by fiddling around you'll get the hang of it...
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